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please pray

so i am back from Liberia.
i didn’t mention i was going until the hour i left.
partly because i don’t like to cause people to worry and partly because i didn’t want to listen to people worry.
i understand people sharing their concern but also it is not usually helpful.
so… i kept it to myself and a few close friends & family.
and they were worried enough that i didn’t want to add more onto that.

i will share lots of photos and stories but today i just want to ask you pray.

the American doctor who has tested positive is my friends Pam & Eric’s best friend.
he is a medical missionary who has been working so hard to HELP.
he is adored by his friends and family.

then.. to stop & think HARD about how every person (over 1200!) that has contracted the virus is also as special as Dr. Brantly.
every person has a story.
no life more important than the next.
yet now it feels so much more real.
and it is so much worse than i can convey here.

please pray…

-for dr. brantly & nancy his co-worker and their families
-for my friends wrapped up SMACK in the middle of this crisis
-for those in the hospital… working and sick
-for liberia

click here for more information on samaritan’s purse & ebola in liberia.

Toni :0) - What virus? Sorry I’m out of the loop so I will pray for him and all the others.

Rebecca - Praying.

Jer. 29:11

Alissa Getson - Will be praying!!! Will also find more prayer warriors!!!!

elma - Oh this is so sad. So glad you are home and safe and will pray for this doctor and everyone else. It was just on the news here that he took a turn for the worse…

JoAnn - oh no! I was just thinking about that Doctor last night and praying, I think God woke me up. I am so sad about this, the whole thing.

Angela - May I add this prayer request to the prayers requests at my church? We have many dedicated prayer warriors. So glad you are home, I follow you on instagram so I knew you were leaving and I’ve prayed for you since.

Mickie Lara - Dear Goodness, I just can’t even fathom the bravery and commitment these people have to be willing to put themselves into such a scary situation to try and help so many. Honestly, you just going over there is more than I think I could ever bring myself to do so thank goodness for Dr. Brantly, your friends and all of his coworkers. And, just lots and lots of prayers going up for them.

Deborah Jeffrey - Thank you for your willingness to go…and to share…
I am praying. Thanking God that Dr. Brantly had a heart for service…so much so that he was willing to serve and lay down his life to help others. My prayers are for his family and friends, for the people in the village that face this horrible virus everyday.

Tina Jacobsen - Oh Meg!! We are praying!! My heart aches for Liberia! Thank you for sharing and bringing a little corner of the world to our doorstep!

Kristin S - I was completely shocked this made the national news last night and they mentioned they are medical missionaries.

And you know them.

Jen - Have been following this story at this blog of one of Dr Brantly’s family members.

Breaks my heart. Praying. Glad you are home safely, Meg!

Sara - I will ask God to be merciful in protecting your friends in Liberia and in healing Dr. Kent and Nancy and bringing them safely through such a life-threatening illness. They have given everything in order to serve others in their time of dire need. May God minister to them in body and spirit on their sick beds in Liberia.

Dara - Praying.

Corinne - I will pray for all the people of Liberia. I am grateful that you are home with your family. All the best to you.

Caitlin - Thank you so much for posting this. We are friends of Nancy’s family and have been praying hard for God’s healing and glory in the midst of this.

Tiffany Clark - I’m so sorry Meg, for any sorrow and worry you are holding right now, for your friends, and the people of Liberia. I live a sheltered life when it comes to the news (partly by choice, and partly because I don’t want my young children to be exposed to it), yet I get so mad at myself that I didn’t know about this problem. I could have been praying earlier! Thank you for bringing it to our attention. Hugs to you! Take care!

Jessica - Sending prayers for the Brantly family. As I was reading your post tonight, I was also watching Anderson Cooper and his interview with a Pastor (I believe) of the Brantly family Church. What an amazing man, doing amazing work…a true hero.

jen - Thank you for going and for coming home and sharing with those of us that aren’t blessed to be able to go. My heart goes out to Liberia and to the Brantly family, Pam and her family and to you.

Eugenia from Southern California - Gracious Heavenly Father,
You alone know your will for us.
We ask for your tender mercy on Dr. Brantly.
As a physician, Lord, Dr. Brantly has put himself in harms
way to help the less fortunate. Lord, we ask for you to
surround Dr. Brantly and all the health workers with your healing
and protecting light. Bring them to and keep them in good health.
Heal them, Lord, and wash them in your mercy so they may continue their important work. We pray also for Dr. Brantly’s family and associates. Lord, show your love for the people of Liberia through an out pouring of love. In Jesus’ holy name.


Angela Atkins - It looks like you almost got stuck in Liberia, with the borders closed now. Were you out of the area–or are you now in a 21 day quarantine? Praying for your friends, the doctor, and his family. So grateful that you were finally able to spend some time together with Pam and encourage them in their work there!

Amie - Praying.

Jessica Johnson - Praying like crazy. Thank you for going. I loved seeing your pictures. Miss you.

Heather - Praying!

Kirsten J - Prayers – that is too close for comfort – how frightening for you and your friends. I’ll tell you this: I’m a huge Stephen King fan, and The Hot Zone is the scariest book I’ve ever read. And Mr. King agrees. Ebola is nothing to be taken lightly. Hugs.

Angela - On my knees this morning for him.

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this was weird.

we were on our way to sean’s basketball tournament in kansas and we saw ostriches.
like… 50 of them on the side of the road.
so later between games we found out.
It’s called Hendrick’s Exotic Animal Farm located in Nickerson, KS.

we got out of the car and there were all these giraffes…that you could just… PET.
you know how all your life you go to the zoo and everything is really far away and there are signs everywhere to stay back and don’t touch?
this is opposite!
and suddenly we were petting a giraffe!
our minds were blown.

^^^^ my picture.

^^^ talby’s picture.

check out that gorgeous profile!

then i tried for a selfie with the giraffe… and i think it has done this before.
because as soon as i turned around it licked my head.
and wrapped my hair around that tongue.

we loved the giraffes.
but none of us were liking the ostriches up close.
it was WAY too close.
have you ever seen one really close?

do you see the ostrich on the far left… see how the wing feathers are blowing up from the wind?
so creepy.  and their eyes bug out… the necks? the half open beak?! the huge middle toe claw?!! oh my word.
later that night when i was going to bed i told craig “i am honestly worried about having nightmares about those ostriches today”
i love watching the girls explore with photography.

this was a really fun completely unexpected stop.
we were just looking for a park to run around and we ended up hugging a giraffe!

DebbieLynn - I am crying…I am laughing so hard right now! Real tears! The ostrich! Your expression! I have LIVED that! I am a huge animal lover. I am vegan because I love animals so much. Last spring we went to a wildlife safari. Saw bears, lions, zebras, etc. So cool…BUT..we were able to buy a cup of food to feed the ostriches that were able to walk up to the car. I was SO excited!!! At FIRST….soon as they walked up to me and got close..i screamed my head off, and just threw the whole cup of food out of the car. I almost cried and had an anxiety attack. They are SO creepy!!!!(poor But I love the giraffes!! :)

Jenny B. - Awesome! Talby’s giraffe picture is so great! There is a drive-thru safari near where we live, and the ostriches (or emus maybe?) come right up to your car window and stare at you. It is freaky! :)

Carol S. - We have TWO of these in Knoxville but I haven’t been there yet. They get rave reviews from all ages. Fun fun pics! You are fun parents.

Heather S. - My mom took my girls here about 5 years ago and they stayed for the weekend. They rode a camel, fed baby kangaroos, and generally had a fabulous time.
Have you ever been to Tanganyika in Goddard? Been twice now. I have the BEST pic ever of my then 9 year old hugging a giraffe! So sweet! And the lemurs? It’s awesome to just sit and let them climb all over you. We love that place!

Haley F - Talbee’s picture is soo cool! this post is amazing!

Stacy - Oh My Goodness. I’m dying from the giraffe cuteness! We have something similar in Pine Mountain, Ga, but I don’t remember petting the giraffes! So glad ya’ll stopped AND shared the awesome pictures! I’d love a LARGE print of the giraffe close-up!

Suzelle - Those giraffes are SO dang COOL !!! You got some amazing photos :) Your expression with the ostrich is hilarious :)

Dara - I love that place!! we’ve been there twice. I love the giraffes.

Kari Bobari - I just found out I am pregnant yesterday. Here’s how I know it’s true… these pictures made me cry and tell my husband, “I love giraffes so much. I just want to move there so I can go see them every day.”
Haha. Wow! First pregnancy, things are weird!

Jennifer - Oh my goodness…how fun!! The giraffes are so beautiful and boy, the ostriches–they are creepy!

Tiffany - Meg, I love these posts of yours. For the few minutes I’m reading it, it’s such an escape to a happy place. You make me laugh, and tonight I shared some pics and part of your story with my husband and it had us both laughing. Thank you for that. Also, looked like a goat was getting fresh with you. :)

Ashley Tiburcio - this is awesome! we are planning to go to Kansas next summer…I’ve never been and neither has my hubby or kids….We are going to go to Schlitterbahn but are wanting to explore to so we may just have to stop here too! Do you have any more places that might be interesting stops? I love exploring and we are going to have 4 days to do just that….

Kerri - Isn’t it fun to discover something special in your own backyard, so to speak? Hedrick’s has been there for many years. School children from the town we used to live in in central Kansas go there for field trips.

Lora - Those giraffes are the cutest!

Lorieloo - Also. An ostrich peeing might be the most disgusting & horrifying thing ever.

Cathy - that is so cool.. if I ever get out that way ..from OHIO I will have to stop. So how did it feel when he licked you. I was reading and saying ewwwwww….

Kerry - This is SO cool! Can’t believe you could just pet them! That giraffe selfie is amazing, and great blue tongue shot too Talby!

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my milk paint experience

awhile back i found this buffet on pinterest.
i think i entered “green buffet” to see what came up.
and that was that.
i was in love!
i tracked down the artist and asked her HOW did you make this look like this?
she told me she used milk paint and a dark cream and wax.
(she has lots of beautiful pieces that she has created!)

so i started looking around online for these things… i know… you probably know all about this but i didn’t.

i ended up on amazon and i came across Jodi from Back40Life and thought “hey… i know that girl!”
because i did!
i have worked with Jodi in the past over the internet so i emailed her and said “tell me the real scoop on what i need to make my buffet look like this”
She sent me all the supplies i would need to complete the project that i was dying to work on.

i had NEVER used milk paint before.
honestly i didn’t even know that milk paint was a “thing” let alone how big of a following it has.
did you know that people go to milk paint classes?!
where have i been?!
this is the buffet i wanted to paint.
i got it from an antiques shop 9 years ago and haven’t done a thing to it in those 9 years.
it was finally time!
(disclaimer…our bedroom has really funky lighting and it is HARD to get a great photo)
very first…i rubbed all the edges of this piece with the wax puck for sanding later.

did you know milk paint comes as a powder?!
i used my blender to mix it up (because the package told me i could).
i thought “this is crazy that i am using my ninja for paint!”
but i did.
and it worked.
and the ninja survived.
BUT you can buy a little hand mixer that would be way better… i recommend that.

i decided to not use the bonding agent since i wanted the paint to be super chippy.
that was me just guessing and hoping it worked.
i figured if the paint didn’t stick then i would just start over… it’s only paint!
nothing that can’t be fixed.  :)

this color is called Boxwood.
i painted a few coats.
and let it dry.
it is very flat paint.  i was nervous.  this is not my style at all.

and then came back and saw it was CHIPPING RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME!
my mood changed immediately!
i was giddy.

i used this scraper and the paint just fell off.
i wasn’t putting pressure on the scraper… just moving it over the green paint.

before and after the scraping.IMG_7838IMG_7841
after i scraped the chippy stuff off… i lightly sanded everything to get it even chippier!
i LOVED this stage!
i wiped it all down with a rag to remove the dust and extra dry paint.
THEN i used the hemp oil over the entire piece… put it on a clean rag and applied it.
when it was completely dry i finished the piece by sealing it with Antiquing Wax using that great big brush.
i was nervous about this part but really it just made it look finished and not flat anymore!
i like it!
of course i can’t decide on the drawer pulls so those are still missing.
photo 1photo 2
i was so pleased with using Milk Paint!
there are so many different styles and variations you can do depending on color or the piece you painting… if you use the bonding agent or not…SO MUCH FUN!

You can get all the supplies for any milk paint project you have from Back40Life in their etsy shop.
They sell Miss Mustard Seed Paints and supplies.
they were great to work with…helpful and knowledgable!

and look at all these great colors there are to choose from?!
have you ever used milk paint?
what do you want to paint next – or for your first project?
Which color would you pick?

i am crushing on that mustard seed yellow…. or the tricycle… or typewriter….


Lizelle - Wow – it looks great! I need to find something to paint in the “typewriter” colour!! ;)

Angela - Looks great! I love the idea of using it for your tv too! I’ve never used it but I love the colors it comes in!

jamie - silly question: why is it called milk paint? would this look good on bathroom or kitchen cupboards?

jamie - just went to the {miss mustard seed} website. my questions can be answered there. i think i’m in love.

Carol S. - Where’ve ya been Meg? Ha ha, can’t believe you haven’t seen this around for awhile. Probably busy in your chicken coop. :) Yes, been wanting to do same thing to a couple of pieces in my guest room…dresser and desk…each time I host guests, I think “I must do that before the next guest.” Maybe this time I will. A consignment store near me has a big display of these type products and offers classes. Loved the pics and descriptions and your buffet looks fab.

ALicia @ Investing Love - I have never used it, but you just convinced me…first chance I get I’m doing it!!!

Heather S. - Love the result! I struggle to do these projects. I’ve completed an end table and a decorative garden gate (for over the mantle), but I wish I’d have been more chippy with my paint. Still looks too “freshly painted.” KWIM?

Anyway, lovely work here, Meg! I really like the tricycle, the mustard seed yellow, and the kitchen scale! What fun colors!

Alex - Thanks for sharing your heart.

I have been inspired to share my journey with Huntingtons Disease.

heidi e. - These would be cute in white:

Or any anthro knobs.. especially the on sale ones! ;)

Jenn - Um….LOVE IT! Its turned out fabulous!

Barbie - Love your buffet!! I am really liking the Flow Blue color!!!

Lorri - Love this! I just used chalk paint for the first time on living room end tables and now you’ve convinced me to broaden my reach with milk paint as well. So glad to see “the classics” like this get a new life – it looks terrific.

Jennifer - Wow! That looks amazing, Meg! Great job…I’ve never heard of milk paint–thanks for sharing your “how-to” on this…I’m going to have to give this a try.

Gina - Apparently you haven’t been reading Marian’s blog. ;) I love the look of milk paint but over the past five years I have painted several pieces in my house but don’t really have anything left. :/ I’m still thinking about painting some of my beroom pieces though!! Your piece is gorgeous!! :)

Mandy - …I have a very similar buffet that I nabbed for free with the matching table and I’ve been wanting to re-do them with milk paint. I’m loving that mustard seed yellow!

Wendy - love this! Where did you get your striped drapes? I love those! So pretty and just the right amount of chippy. Also, looks so authentic not sanded to look old!!

Denise Sandberg - I painted my first piece with chalk paint about a year ago – it was super fun – I skipped the hemp oil step and went straight to the wax – but it turned out great. Now I have an antique piece that has been sanded down to it’s bare wood and I’m fearful to paint it with chalk paint – I think I probably should use the bonding agent or it will just soak into the wood…..I can’t wait to get it done – now I need TIME! :) Your piece looks amazing! can’t wait to see the finished project!

erin - Meg!!! GREAT post. And I love how it turned out *without* the bonding agent. The chippier, the better, in my book.
For the record, I do believe Kitchen Scale is my favorite.

Terri - I love how your buffet turned out. I knew you would love Miss Mustard Seed Paints! They are great. You should check out the Miss Mustard seed website. Every Friday she has a linky party and people send in pictures of projects they have done using the Miss Mustard Seed milk paint. You should put your buffet on there. It turned out really nice. Miss Mustard Seed’s dining room is featured on the cover of the new Romantic Country Homes magazine. You can see her dining room furniture that she painted. Also, she has a great picture of a cow above her buffet.

Katie - Ohhhh I love it! I’ve been itching to try out milk paint. I have a coffee table that desperately needs to be repainted, and that Mustard Seed Yellow would be perfect. I love the striped curtains paired with the buffet, too. Can’t wait to see more progress of how you’re making your new house a home.

Michelle Whitlow - One of these days I’m going to try the milk paint. I’ve only used chalk paint & distressed it by sanding. Looks awesome!!!

Jeri - Typewriter is my fav. Been wanting to paint something gray…

Meredith - Looks amazebeans Meg!! Milk paint for the win:)

Emily - Thank you so much for sharing this! I LOVE this! :) Beautiful!

Kimberlee Jost - You know that built in that’s in my living room.
That needs this paint.
And I’m happy to have you on speed dial for when I get stuck!

Aimee - I have a piece in my garage that my hubby and I were talking about ….. SO happy to see this! Tricycle is going to be perfect!! And then we have the kitchen table to do and then the hutch in the dining room, oh, and the table in the office….

Amy Woods - I’m trying to get brave enough to do this. I bought a vintage sewing machine in it’s original cabinet. That’s what I want to try it out on. I think I might go for it in tricycle. Only I wouldn’t do chippy since it is a sewing machine cabinet…at least not on top. Love how your buffet turned out!

Tanya H - I love this! Thank you for answering my questions on how to make furniture look like that! I sooo want to redo my old dresser in Linen for my daughter!

Laurel - Looks FAB! I always wanted to try milk paint since I first heard about it years ago but never got around to it… Recently I found Annie Sloan’s milk paint and OH My Goodness. What I love about it is the lack of prep work-a plus for me!!!! I have painted two brown wood pieces so far. A table that I painted with Paris Grey milk paint and then and then a white coat over and then some sandpaper to distress and then the wax with the fancy brush just like yours. Next I painted a bookcase-from Ikea and it turned out fab. One more bookcase to go and then my new loft area will look very beachy! My husband is afraid that I found this paint as what will I paint nex….:)

Lisa - OMG! I love this! I went to the Etsy shop and then to the Miss Mustard Seed’s website and watched the tutorials on how to do this. I have to chairs I got for free that I need to repaint and upholster, I am so excited to milk paint them now!!

Mindy - Waaay back in the ’80′s, like when Country Living was just getting their magazine feet wet, I read about milk paint but wow has it ever taken off! Your piece looks so great. I am definitely keeping the process in mind for a future project.

Jenny B. - It looks great!! I have a lone dining chair I’ve been wanting to paint Mustard Seed Yellow. We have a local shop that carries it, so I just need to go get it and get started! :)

Southern Gal - I haven’t used milk paint yet, but my son and his fiancée painted my dining room table and chair for me in a jade. It’s chippy without meaning to be. I love it! My husband hates it. Sigh.

Megan - I love it! This is what I’ve been waiting for ;)
I wanted to see how yours turned out because I was scared to do my own. But, I did it anyway. I chose chalk paint because I need instant gratification and didn’t want to wait for shipping on the milk paint. Now I want to buy all kinds of furniture to repaint. And I’ll probably be ordering some milk paint too. I’m hooked. I need Luckett’s Green and Kitchen Scale in my life.

Here’s mine:

Beth - So cute! I am now itching to milk paint something, anything. Think my neighbors will notice if I sand and paint their cat?

Karen - You should just email and then call Marian (Miss Mustard Seed). Im sure she’d love to talk to you…

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fresh air

we met up with my parents last weekend for some outdoor fun and a picnic.
sean was gone at camp… it’s weird when there are only three kids with us!
we tried to catch crawfish, climbed on the rocks and explored.IMG_4180IMG_4190IMG_4206IMG_4209
annie found me the Ultimate heart rock but then we dropped it and it broke.  :(
it was too hot NOT to jump in for just a bit.

on the drive home craig let me stop for some photos of beautiful places.
i love the rust…the chipped paint… the washed out wood…LOVE!

getting out of the house… exploring new places… it always feels good.

i should get outside again today!

Traci - That’s a beautiful heart rock! I always look out for heart shaped rocks too, for some reason. You’ll have more. :]

chasity - so many beautiful photos.
looks like a wonderful day.

Julie - Looks like you all had a fabulous day. Love all those old rustic buildings, so sad that many of them are abandoned.

Mel - You have such a great eye – for color, for photos, for arrangement – I always love seeing the world from your point of view.

Jen - District 34 schoolhouse…hmmm…my grandma is from Chapman. Was this anywhere near there?

colleen - You are good … photography is awesome.. so glad craig let you stop… we are all the richer!

Lori - So sad about the heart rock. At least you have a picture of it. My kids find heart rocks for me too. My 6 year old boy brought me one today and said “mommy I found you a heart rock but it was muddy so I washed it off in a mud puddle and dried it on my shirt. ” Sweet boy. Oh and the old, rusty forgotten places make me so happy too.I need to stop along the way to enjoy them as well.

Janet - Isn’t the school in Marion County off 50 Highway?

tara // etsetara - o meg, this post makes me miss joplin!
we moved to NYC two weeks ago and i haven’t seen enough green around here. =]

thanks for the lovely photos.

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